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10 Reviews
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The original space opera, 29 Oct 2008
By 
Peter Debney (Ilkley, Yorkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Skylark of Space (Paperback)
Do not expect the technological accuracy of hard science fiction or the social commentary of soft SF; this is Space Opera, adventure on a grand scale. In Skylark, the men are real men, the women are real women, and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri just do not stand a chance.

E.E. "Doc" Smith is hailed as being the creator of both interstellar science fiction and of the Space Opera sub-genre. His visions of epic space battles by the greatest of heroes against the evilest of villains inspired many great SF writers through the 20th century, eventually leading to its eminent descendant Star Wars. This is were it all began, boldly going to galaxies far far away, seeking out new worlds and ways of writing SF. Skylark's faults may be many, but they are forgivable. If later works seem more refined, it is because this is the mother lode. Forget characterisation and realism: just hold on tight and enjoy the ride. All aboard?
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read, gripping series, a must have sci-fi book, 28 Dec 2001
By A Customer
This is the first of 4 books which chart the rival scientists discovery of a secret which releases ultimate energy. They battle it out over 4 books to see who can control the secret. They meet a lot of different races on different worlds and amass an army on both sides. A book you cannot put down but must read to the end! Well worth the money!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Space opera at it's best, 27 Feb 2009
By 
A. L. Pask "Mostly" (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Skylark of Space (Paperback)
A great story, pure space opera. First published in 1928. Where Einstein's theory of relativity was just a theory and disproved in the book. Heroes were heroic, heroines were there really to scream and point and do the cooking (??) and no one had ever heard of a computer.

It's a great story one of the original and IMO best of the "early" sci fi. My only complaint, is the quality of this edition. On at least 2 occasions paragraphs are repeated or just seem to stop mid stream. An indicator of a rushed production which needed some more quality control.

So story 5 stars, this edition 4. There are only a couple of errors that I saw and they can be distracting.

One question. Given there's no copyright notice anywhere, are these being reprinted from the original because the copyright has expired? If so does that mean you can read them for free in Google books?
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5.0 out of 5 stars EE Doc Smith is great!, 26 April 2014
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I have loved his Lensman series so I thought I'd try the Skylark series. Just as good- his characters are very believable.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A MUST READ SERIES, 24 Feb 2013
By 
Mr. William J. Moody (Aston Cross, Tewkesbury, UK) - See all my reviews
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ANY SCIFI READER WOULD LOVE THE EE DOC SMITH SERIES OF BOOKS. I HAVE ALWAYS JUDGED A BOOK ON ITS ABILITY TO HOLD ME IN THE DEPTH OF THE STORY RIGHT FROM PAGE ONE. DOC SMITH HAS CERTAINLY DONE THIS WITH ALL OF HIS BOOKS. THE STORY LINES ARE ENTHRALLING GLIMPSES INTO AN ADVENTURERS LIFE OF DAREDEVIL ACTION COUPLED WITH FLUKEY GOODLUCK, AND WHEN THE STAR CHARACTERS ARE THE EMBODIMENT OF PHYSICAL PERFECTION THAT WE WOULD ALL LOVE TO BE THEN YOU CAN'T HELP BUT GET DRAWN INTO THE PLOT OF THE VARIOUS STORIES. EVEN IF YOU ARE NOT A TOTAL SCIFI ADDICT THERE IS SUFFICIENT SENTIMENTALITY AND DOWN RIGHT MILLS AND BOON RELATIONSHIPS THAT YOU CAN'T WAIT FOR THE NEXT CHAPTER TO BEGIN TO SEE IF THE COUPLES STAY TOGETHER ETC, ETC. THE SKYLARK SERIES IS PROBABLY THE BEST TO BEGIN WITH FOLLOWED BY THE LENSMAN SERIES THOUGH I WAS INTO VOLUME THREE BEFORE I WAS DYING TO GET THE NEXT VOLUME, STILL VERY ENJOYABLE.
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4.0 out of 5 stars OH MY GOD! You can't write that!, 18 May 2011
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This review is from: The Skylark of Space (Paperback)
I read this when I was 12, and re-read it out of nostalgia.

It's a product of it's time, with wild ideas about physics (the author doesn't accept the speed of light as a maximum). As such it is more science fiction than a lot of what is around simply because it is so dated. Women are, of course, home makers and carers. Dark skin = barbarian, medium skin = servant, light skin = civilised (and it's not the skin colour but skin hue, this applies whether you're earthling beige/brown or alien green/khaki).

Oh, and there's something all too homoerotic about the authors love of the male form (lovingly described within the limits of the time the book was written).

It is, however, a real romp; a space opera (the first one) and thoroughly enjoyable.

I was hooting with shock/amusement based laughter, and somewhat horrified. Demonstrating I am a product of my time as well.

Worth a read. Try to be forgiving. Worth reading again.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Skylark Series, 12 Jan 2011
This review is from: The Skylark of Space (Paperback)
One of the first true Sci-fi series I read as a young teenager and I still read them again and again. Dated they may be but a good yarn all the same. The language seems very dated and some of the expressions used throughout bring a smile to your face but that's part of the charm. I would love to see these on Kindle so I can take them with me when I die. Haha.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The grand daddy of all space operas--from 1928. Yee-HAW!!!, 16 Sep 2010
By 
L. E. Cantrell (Vancouver, British Columbia Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Skylark of Space (Paperback)
This is vintage stuff.

Back when T. E. Lawrence (of Arabia) was still tootling around Britain on his motorcycle, Edward E. Smith, Ph.D.* was writing of another motor cycle-riding chap named Richard Seaton who was stumbling upon a super-dooper power source. Well, naturally, he and a buddy and a couple of girlfriends load it onto their own home-built space ship** and blast off to visit the moon, or maybe Mars, or Jupiter. Anyway, things go a little wrong and they end up in deep intersteller space. Almost before you can say Jack Robinson, the boys and girls are up to their necks in a war of planetary extermination waged by their allies (who look and talk and think just like good old, albeit green-skinned reliable Anglo-Saxon stock) and the no-good, nasty villains (who don't.)

As if that weren't enough, the bright motor cycle rider has an earth-born rival, one Marc C. "Blackie" (of course) DuQuesne, who is just as bright, a lot more ruthless and has this little plan to make himself Emperor of the Universe--or maybe just the galaxy***, I forget.

Grab your furry spacesuits, boys, check the batteries in your blasters and jump on board.

Hoo-BOY!!!!

-----
* Such is the name that Edward E(lmer) Smith, a chemist of soaring imagination and slightly less high-flying literary skill, chose to put on his fiction

** They christen it "Skylark." Hail to thee, blithe spaceship.

*** It should be kept in mind that in 1928, the astronomical world was only slowly emerging from the debate over whether the Milky Way Galaxy was the only "island universe" in all of space.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Classic series but dated, 10 Aug 2005
By 
Mr. M. Koszler "FordPrefect" (Cheshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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The skylark series is truely a classic but now might seem more than a little dated. If you can put aside the dated nature of this book and the series they truely are a excellent series of books.
The skylark of space I think is one of the first books ever to even suggest interstellar travel, and I have said if you can put aside the morality of the past (would seem a little sexest now) and the dated discriptions of science then you may really enjoy this book.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CLASIC SI-FI IN THE OLD MOULD, 24 Dec 2007
By 
Mr. T. J. Green (YORKSHIRE, ENGLAND) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Skylark of Space (Paperback)
THIS WAS THE FIRST SI-FI I EVER GOT AND AS ANOTHER READER SAYS IT IS A BIT DATED NOW BUT IT IS STILL AN EXCELENT READ. I MUST HAVE READ IT 6 OR 8 TIMES AND THE BOOKS ARE DROPING TO BITS BUT I ALWAYS ENJOY IT

I NOW HAVE THE SERIES I READ AND A BOX SET I KEEP UN-READ
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The Skylark of Space
The Skylark of Space by Lee Harkins Garby (Paperback - 26 Mar 2007)
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